User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 223 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 14 out of 223

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  1. Feb 9, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I love this game so much I could write a 1000 word essay on it, actually I DID write a 1000 word essay on it.
    Anyways heres my review.

    There are very few games in my life in which I have played that can change your perspective so much it gives you new ideas on how to live and to me The World Ends With You just does that. The game was made by a combination of Square Enix (most famous for developing the Final Fantasy series and the Kingdom Hearts series another two of my favourite franchises) and Jupiter most famous for making the two Pokémon Pinball games, the Game Boy Camera and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories.
    But getting back to the review let’s start with something; The World Ends With You isn’t your typical RPG. It doesn’t have a medieval setting where there are dragons to fight and princesses to save and some evil overlord that wants to rule the world. It’s unbelievably far from that.

    Scrambling for your life in Shibuya:
    The World Ends With You is set in modern day Tokyo, Japan, more specifically the district of Shibuya most famous for its Scramble Crossing and the Statue of Hachiko. In The World Ends With You players take on the role of Neku Sakuraba, a 15 year-old boy with anti-social tendencies who hates people but a turn of events means he wakes up in the Shibuya Scramble remembering nothing but his name. Within minutes he gets a text message saying that he has 60 minutes to reach the 104 Department centre or face erasure. He basically now has to play the “Reapers Game” in which he has to stay alive for seven days, each day getting a different mission in which if he loses he dies. He will also have to make a pact in which he must partner up with someone else in order to survive the Reaper’s game which Neku does not like due to his dislike of people. Throughout the three weeks in which the game takes place Neku will meet a diverse cast of allies and enemies ranging from a tattooed twisted mathematical genius to a typical female anime girl with a dark secret. Its gameplay is amazing.
    The World Ends With You is an outstanding game in my mind for many, many reasons. The story, characters, soundtrack and so many other things fit so well into a game that is so different from the shooting and sports games that the mainstream UK gamers are so used to playing that it might as well be in a different universe. It is one of the few games that has taught me something like trying to enjoy my life and make the most of what I’ve got. Six years on after the game has been released there has been no word on a sequel -The World Ends With You Too?- aside from a teaser image two years ago. The closest that was gotten was the main characters making a cameo in Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance on 3DS but as always one can hope.
  2. Oct 21, 2013
    Twewy is one of a kind for the DS and should not be skipped. The gameplay is unique and refreshing with both stylus action on the lower screen and combos performed with the directional pad on the upper screen simultaneously. The story is exceptionally beautiful and it is very easy to get attached to the characters.
  3. Sep 28, 2013
    This is probably one of the few games I completed a majority of the post-game bonus content in, because it was actually fun to keep exploring this world and push myself in. This game had probably one of, if not the most impressive stories for the DS, and amazing gameplay to back it up. The art style was also perfect for the setting, and really created its own personality. This was one of the must have games for the DS, period, and there's many reasons to play it over and over again.
    Art: 9
    Music: 9
    Story: 10
    Gameplay 9
  4. Sep 25, 2013
    Its not exaggerating to call it one of the best games on the NDS, The World Ends With You brings a refreshingly new game play experience for the JRPG genre, and one of the games that make full use of the NDS dual screen function. Not simply pure game play, the game brings along a great music collection and a fantastic storyline. While the story was not particularly long, its short,straight to the point and you would've understood the plot and its details by the end of the game. After the end game, there also reports to collect to as unlockables for more details, and even a special chapter.
    Overall, a good game and challenging experience as its a new type of game.Worth a pick up.
  5. Sep 20, 2013
    One of my favorite games ever! This game has an amazing plot and while some of the characters might seem annoying they become really great once you get to know them. The combat is great and never gets old. An enjoyable feature about the combat is you can choose when to fight instead of happening randomly (except for a few fixed encounters). The pins are really interesting and are enjoyable to collect and fight with. Aside from gameplay the story is amazing and I really hope for a sequel. Expand
  6. May 30, 2013
    This game is amazing the ending shocked me and it was a very beautiful game with good graphics. The story was not only great but it also influenced me to stop being so anti-social. All of the characters were very interesting and realistic (even Shiki and Beat). The soundtrack fit the game perfectly and the combat system was one of the most unique I have seen before in a JRPG. This is without a doubt the best game for the DS and is one of my favorite games of all time. Expand
  7. Mar 14, 2013
    This was likely my biggest disappointment in the DS, especially given the excellent reviews it got. The World Ends With You is a wannabe RPG that tries to be unique and goes too far. The dialogue is tedious and often meaningless (and there's no way to skip it), the gameplay is repetitive, the screen is incredibly convoluted at all times, and the setting, while showing promise, ends up a drag to anyone who doesn't have a particularly big interest in the fashion and habits of Japanese teens.

    Admittedly, the storyline is delightfully weird, if not particularly well presented (see the boring dialogue comment above), and is likely the best part of the game. However, the gimmicky gameplay makes it difficult to actually see it through the end.
  8. Feb 2, 2013
    Great and different story and a style of its own. The scenery and music are perfect for this kind of story. Loooots of pins to try out that make the battles more fun and a great quantity of things to do even after beating the game.
  9. Dec 23, 2012
    This game is way too awesome to even review, if you don't own this and Ur RPG fan and u have a Ds, u should should drop everything and just go buy the game
  10. Nov 25, 2012
    Perhaps the best RPG Square has put out since FFVII. The first time I played this game, it was all I did for a week. I played it over a Christmas break, literally non-stop. The sound track is amazing, the story has a fascinating concept, and the game play is new and different, not to mention delightfully challenging. Admittedly it does subscribe to a few of the classic JRPG tropes, but I feel as though they are welcome tropes for this game, because they aren't half-assed--it does them well. Expand
  11. Nov 20, 2012
    Easily one of the BEST games, let alone of the DS, the history, completely amazing and original story and character development with a nice gameplay. Definitely a must-have for JRPG fans.
  12. Jun 18, 2012
    A great addition to Square Enix's library
    Original and fresh.
    A fantastic soundtrack, engaging story line and genuinely interesting characters.
    An intriguing and difficult to master battle system helps provide a solid gaming experience.
    Whether you're a lover of RPG's or not, this game will quickly enter it's way into your favourites. For those whose nightmares are haunted by stat
    screens, text, and a major lack of guns, steer clear. Expand
  13. May 15, 2012
    Really great battle system that took coordination of both hands and screens. Some of the puzzles were good. The trivia quizes you had to pass in order to advance in the game were lame.
  14. Apr 30, 2012
    This game still remains as one of Square's finest stories since Final Fantasy VI. The characters, while admittedly stereotypes, do not feel forced or convoluted as characters. They all have struggles that they have the desire to overcome, and believe it or not, the mounds and mounds of exposition that comes out of these character's mouths, while slightly annoying, only helped to drive the story home. With that being said, though, the combat and customization in this game are also very top-notch. Having the ability to multiply the base attacks of certain-brand pins in this game really adds a dash of power when this game is in the hands of a dedicated player. Long story short, this game was amazing to me. It rose above all expectations and truly delivered a powerful experience straight from the minds of Square Enix. Expand
  15. Mar 29, 2012
    A year ago, I had zero interest in this game. But when it was revealed characters from the game will be appearing in Kingdom Hearts 3D, my curiosity of the gamme grew. So I finally got it, and I loved it! Great story and characters! A must have for anyone who owns a DS!
  16. Mar 20, 2012
    Finished playing TWEWY yesterday. I can safely say that this is the single most overrated game I've ever played. No, it isn't BAD, but for the amount of acclaim it receives, I'd definitely expected much, much more. My main grief lays within the combat itself. You collect pins which provide your main character with special powers, like casting a path of flames or striking your opponent with a meteor. Your partner takes the top screen and can be either controlled by CPU or using the D-pad. The battles are conducted in real time. Sounds about good, right? Wrong. The matches are not only extremely boring and repetitive, they also take absolutely 0 brain to play. I button mashed my way to victory from the first day to the last boss included, and this was on HARD difficulty. Don't even get me started on Normal and Easy. The enemies (called The Noise) are of little variety. Well over a half of monster list is hogged by the recolours of the same beasts you have fought at least 3000 times before. There is also a little minigame called Tin Pin Slammer which I guess was added in attempt to prevent the player from falling asleep from boredom. Unfortunately, it is so bad it is almost physically painful to play, and worst of all, the games DOES force you to play it at least a few times during the storyline, and trust me - you will hate it. To keep this review from being a mudsling-fest, the gameplay admittedly does have a few shining points. One good part is the importance fashion plays in this game. Each zone of the Shibuya has trends going in it, which determine how powerful the pins are in the battle. Strong brands have their attack doubled, whereas weak brands - halved. There are also tons of fashion items to buy and collect from the in-game designer shops, which work just like your typical RPG armour and provide additional perks to your character. Next, the plot. If you've read the manga "Duds Hunt", well, TWEWY is basically it, expect toned down to keep the 12+ age rating. Square Enix went a bit overboard with the dialog, but since the characters are fairly likeable you will read through them anyway, if only to learn more about their backstory. The A/V is a bit of a mixed bag. Unlike most DS games (hell, most games in general) TWEWY uses full recorded songs with lyrics. While the idea itself is fresh, the hip-hop / j-pop / j-rock beats might not suit everyone's tastes and there is no way to turn them off. The graphics are in 2D and have aged badly since 2008, but I'm not much of a graphics whore so it didn't matter that much. At the end of the day, TWEWY it's an interesting concept ruined by horrible gameplay. Stay away from it if you value gameplay over story (like you should) and for those looking for a good plot, go to your local book store and buy some good literature. Expand
  17. Mar 13, 2012
    This is my favourite JRPG! Great storyline, awesome characters, the gameplay is great and the animations are excellent!
    Square-enix should remake it for the wii u.
  18. Jan 30, 2012
    This DS gem from Square Enix proves that the company is not dead yet. Featuring a unique combat system, plenty of customization and an interesting setting (Shibuya, a popular shopping district in Tokyo), this is not a title to be missed. The story follows the struggle of Neku Sakuraba, an introverted boy who finds himself in a Shibuya where no one seems to notice him, and soon enough he realizes that other people are stuck in the "Underground", leaving only one way out: completing the Reapers' trials. A lot of people complain about Neku's personality at the start of the game, but this is something that actually changes as the plot progresses because he becomes much more likeable. The action takes place on both screens - Neku being at the bottom using "pins" and their powers to defeat the Noise that is sprawled throughout Shibuya, and his companion being at the top using a series of button combos for best damage output. It seems chaotic at first, but the truth is, veterans of the game will tell you to focus less on the action on the top screen because the Auto-fight feature will take care of it to a certain extent, meaning you can focus more on Neku. What I found appealing is that you can change the difficulty level once you progress further into the game, as well as Neku's level (i.e. if Neku were level 20 I could set it to 15 for an extra challenge). The lower your level and the harder the difficulty, the better drops enemies will yield.
    I could go on and on about the features, the things you can do after the campaign, the awesome mini-game... but you'll just have to find out for yourself.
  19. Jan 26, 2012
    Want to play one of the best games for the DS? This game has an easy to learn yet difficult to master control setup and is probably one of the best uses of the Dual Screen setup so far. The game has a very nice soundtrack and awesome atmosphere. One of the most memorable games I have played.
  20. Oct 31, 2011
    Awesome plot, great dialogue, Easy fighting system, great story, all the things you would expect from a game like this. This will stand as the best DS game in my book until, god forbid, proven otherwise.
  21. Oct 29, 2011
    (TL;DR at bottom)

    I was very impressed with TWEWY as a whole, and I played the thing to the very end, mainly on hard difficulty, with a -15 level HP reduction. (Jupiter of the Monkey baby!) TWEWY does what most of the other DS games fail to do: Make the most of the dual screen and touch screen, in EVERY situation. You control both the top and the bottom screens simultaneously, leading to
    interesting battles in which you partner might be on the brink of death, and when his (or her, if you prefer Shiki) HP hits zero, it starts taking yours out too.
    At first, TWEWY can seem a bit weak and univiting, but it opens up to something a little more, at least when you clear the first week. You start out alone, an essentially emo kid named Neku, who has relationship problems. He hates people, and truly believes they only bring him down. Now, we can't have that, can we?
    Certianly not. Before you know it, you are thrown into The Game, upon which you instantly make a partnership with a relatively irritating and helpless girl, who's name is Shiki. You are armed with pins, of which allow you to use certain psychs. These psychs will allow you to defeat the noise, your common enemy. Now, the pin system.
    Cascaded with hundreds of pin, this oh-so-simple thing can get really complex VERY quickly. You have three ways to evolve those pins, some evolution chains go in circles, you have pin rankings, and all the pins have a LOT of things that they can do, from melee attacking, to bombs, to meteor smashing, to creating forcefields, you name it, it's in TWEWY. Did I mention that you start out WITHOUT A MENU.
    No save functions, no noise catolog, no item equipping NO NOTHING.
    You die? The game laughs in your face, then sends you back to the last save point. (until you get the retry button, that is. And the run away option)
    YOU LITERALLY HAVE TO FIGHT TO SURVIVE. (And that's a good thing.)
    Of course, you fight your way through the noise, for seven days straight, before facing your first GM.
    Now, most people have seemed to quit at this point, but that doesn't really make sense. You may whine about the repetitive music, the weakness of your deck, the irritating actions and the somewhat-slow plotline.
    That changes about midway through Week 2. Once you start getting bigger payoffs from the noise, you can get better pins, up your hp reduction meter, snag threads, and even buy more music.
    That''s right, the music you buy affects what plays in the background.
    The "threads" that you buy affect how much extra damage your pins can do.
    What you eat can boost stats, but take longer to get down.
    The list can go on and on. All in all, TWEWY is a fantasic game that I loved, but isn't really for everyone.

    TL:DR Version Pros
    -Incredible depth
    -Fantastic battle system
    -Fresh Ideas
    -An actually challenging DS game.
    - MASSIVE postgame value.
    - Survival fight from the beginning.

    -The first week causes many to drop out.
    - Is relatively hard.
    -Plot speed can get old, but the characters develop in the end.
    -Not all the pins are for everyone.
    -You start out with almost nothing.
    -Survival fight right from the beginning.
    - Kinda gangsta themed.

    All in all, great game that might push you away at first, but if you keep on persisting, will reveal the shining, golden center that is TWEWY at its greatest. Surely something to at least add to your collection, if not 100%.
  22. Oct 15, 2011
    what a great game for 20 bucks... ( yeah, im english... oops...i dont use "bucks") pick this up, and then pick up another one and give it to a person to impress them, and, if theyre dubious, show them the ultimate supercalifragalisticexpialidocious power of the ds. flaws? combat: 94%
  23. Oct 4, 2011
    Too many dialogue! Leveling up pins is an uphill battle. I love the importance of fashion in this game though and the background. A lot of people think it is nice once in a while to have a storyline in an urban area like Shibuya instead of some mythical lands etc. Rather than this game, I'd recommend Shin megami tensei devil survivor 1 & 2.
  24. Aug 26, 2011
    The World Ends With You gives you an experience you couldn't possibly have with any other game. The gameplay is very innovative, nothing like anything done before. The Story-Line is full of plot twists that you'll never see coming, and the entire original concept is genius! The music is so B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L that I went and bought the Soundtrack. SOME, of the characters are lovable, e.g Shiki, and whilst some are a bit meh, they're meant to be, and it makes the experience your own, because you have your own thoughts of the players. Individually - Story-Line - 10 Gameplay - 9 Soundtrack - 10 This is my second favourite DS game only to Okamiden, and I think overall it's a 9.5 game, but since Metacritic don't have .5's, it's a 10. Bring on The World Begins With You Square Enix!!! Expand
  25. Jan 26, 2011
    This very easily became one of best games for the DS, it's innovative gameplay is exhilarating and fast paced, it's story very interesting, and comical twist's here and there are enough to keep you entertained.
  26. Jan 17, 2011
    Absolutely awful. I read all the great reviews, and I tried to give it a chance, but it was so amazingly boring that I had to put it down. The text went on and on - I kept wanting to play the game, but I wasn't interested in what the people were saying. By the time I tried to play the game I was so bored that I didn't care. This is the most overrated game I have ever played. Play Zelda instead. Collapse
  27. Nov 4, 2010
    Completely marred by typical Japanese storytelling. You can't hit the skip button fast enough on the insanely bad dialogue and plot. I admit that I am completely biased on this point, but after years of god awful story lines, and hyper-condensed convolution, I can't stomach another minute of button punching just to get back control over the game. Note to game developers: I didn't pick up your title to read a crappy novel!!! Expand
  28. Oct 17, 2010
    I am quite suprised at just how many negative reviews this has been given, its 10 too much, quite possibly one of the ost innovative, original, compelling and attractive games you will ever have the sheer pleasure of playing, well worth the current £13 price tag.
  29. Sep 12, 2010
    Square Enix, with its unfortunate tenancy to publish almost anything that comes through the door, has lost my respect as a publisher. That being said, they are one of the few publishers that would take the risk of publishing this game, so rich in things that have not been done before, and for that, I am grateful. Innovative, with an excellent plot, with twists I never saw coming. Worth playing, and for me, worth a 10/10. Expand
  30. Sep 1, 2010
    The most important thing i can tell you about this game is that it's a grower. I wouldn't say i hated the game when i first played it but because of the steep difficulty curve, off the wall gameplay and slightly irritating characters i certainly found it hard to get into. It wasn't until i'd been playing it for nearly a week that the gameplay suddenly made sense. All of a suddern i found i could appreciate the finer details of the item management, run through chain battles with ease and was having a jolly good time thank you very much! Even the music and characters seem to get less annoying as the game progresses.
    I'm guessing most of the people who gave this a low score probably gave up after a couple of days. I'm not going to pretend that this is a game that everyone will like but genuine innovation and originality are pretty rare in todays games so THEWY is a must but if you're looking for something different.
  31. Jan 17, 2011
    Absolutely awful. I read all the great reviews, and I tried to give it a chance, but it was so amazingly boring that I had to put it down. The text went on and on - I kept wanting to play the game, but I wasn't interested in what the people were saying. By the time I tried to play the game I was so bored that I didn't care. This is the most overrated game I have ever played. Play Zelda instead. Collapse

Generally favorable reviews - based on 59 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 58 out of 59
  2. Negative: 0 out of 59
  1. 90
    The briskly moving plot and the unique battle system adds up yet another winner for Square Enix. [May 2008, p.82]
  2. As far as handheld RPGs go, it doesn’t get much more original than this.
  3. Thw World Ends with You may not have a big name like "Final Fantasy" or "Kingdom Hearts" attached to it, but it certainly deserves the same kind of success. [May 2008, p.87]